What next for Ireland? This column by CEPR President Richard Portes makes the case that the country should restructure its debt.
Economic policy is difficult enough. Economists must be especially careful in offering opinions on policy issues for other countries. But the Irish debt problem is a European problem in its causes and implications (Hesse and González-Hermosillo 2011), and we would like to think that a European identity is some qualification.
It is no help to say ‘if you want to get there, you shouldn’t start from here’. We are where we are. And crises offer opportunities, not only to clever investors, but to reform-minded politicians. Political leaders can seize the day and lead the reforms, with academics providing ideas.